There has been much talk around black tax and the negative effects it can have on one’s financial journey. Most people not only feel obliged but are also expected to help out parents, siblings or cousins. Although not an easy topic to write about since everyone’s situation is completely different, here are a few tips on how you can still work towards financial freedom while helping family out.
Communication is so important in any relationship, even more so, when it comes to your finances and family members. If your family is just used to asking for money randomly, you need to address this. It will not be easy but it has to be done.
If on the other hand they are accustomed to a fixed monthly amount and you cannot afford it anymore, be honest and let them know the reasons why. Whether it is to pay off debt or start your savings/investment journey let them know.
To some, this might seem like you are being selfish and inconsiderate, it is never easy in such situations but think of your goal and stick to your guns.
Now that you have started the conversation, be sure you prepare beforehand; come with a number you can commit to and let it be known that it is only what you can afford going forward.
If it is possible, find out what all the other family members can do, including yourself to come up with extra cash. Whether it be a side hustle or getting a weekend job or asking to work more hours at work. Do whatever it takes.
- Set boundaries
Boundaries are important for healthy relationships, set them. Please remember saying “NO” is will not be the end of the world.
It can also be a good opportunity for you and your family to learn about personal finances and money management. You can take it further by learning new money concepts together and seeing how you can implement them in your lives.
- Let go of guilt
Finally, let go of the guilt of not being able to help out as much as you want or is required of you. Build good money habits that will allow you to help out better in the future without putting you under financial stress.
It can be done.
Black tax as it is called is never an easy subject to tackle, but if there is any hope of this generation becoming financially independent and savvy, boundaries have to be set. Otherwise the circle of poverty and lack of financial literacy continue.